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tplo..is surgery the only answer?

This forum is for dog lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your dog.

  
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rio catalina

where is- everyone?
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 25, '07 8:35pm PST 
i just had my xrays today and they looked bad. total acl ( anterior cruciate ligament) tear and arthritis all over the joint to boot. i actually have been getting around at home fairly well. i am sore and get more sore after a short walk.

mom is worried about several aspects of having surgery....

1. it's an expensive surgery, we do have insurance which will cover less than 1/3 cost.
2. we've heard that frequently the other knee will bust out just with the stress of having surgery done on the one.
3. aftercare may be impossible. i'm 120 pounds and have seperation issues. i can crash through baby gates and have never been crated. our downstairs has no carpet, there are 3-4 steps to get out to pee. blossom will be tough to keep off of me for the extended period i'll need to be confined.

mom wants to do the right thing for me, but doesn't want to be impractical or unrealistic with the expectations. even after i'm recovered she doubts i'll be able to really take long walks ever again. my hips did look great which was a plus for a larger dog like myself.

does anyone have any experience.....? is surgery really our only option? has anyone not had the surgery? mom just doesn't want to make me lame for 8 weeks when i'm not lame now? we still have to go to the board certified surgeon for a second opinion. would love to hear from the dogster crew though. we know you are wise!!

thanks in advance,
rio
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Dixie

PLAY WITH ME
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 25, '07 8:42pm PST 
personally, i don't put a price on the welfare of my dogs. money is no option, as far as i'm concerned. if you can afford it, do it. unfortunately, not everyone can afford it. insurance will cover some of it. could you ask about a payment plan or put it on your credit card? my husband and i keep a serperate bank account just for the dogs.
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Nickey 2/25/01- 12/1/03

I can make- anything good!
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 25, '07 9:44pm PST 
In reality, for my family personally, money IS an issue.shrug

Sorry to say, but although life is priceless, some things are way overboard.

But ACL doesn't have to be.

ACL is not a really good thing. The surgery is expensive and the recovery can be long and painful (Nickey had it, but we didn't get the surgery, read her bio).

But if you have two healthy front legs, things can be lot easier.

Now for a brighter story than Nickey's painful ending story, my friend's dog Lucky had it and he's as good as new! Recovery was 7 months long, but it was really worth it for him. But boy, the $ it cost the owners was a bit hard to imagine. Seeing Lucky now, the money was all worth it.

With ACL it either succeeds beautifully or crumbles to pieces,dog

Edited by author Mon Jun 25, '07 9:46pm PST

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Troop

Happy Dogs come- from CA
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 25, '07 10:17pm PST 
Hi Rio.
I just had my 2nd TPLO 6 weeks ago.
Not a vet, but did research, I am 12, 95lbs and tore my first knee 3 years ago. It was completly torn so sewing them back together was not an option. And I was told that it was very possible that the other knee could go too, not because of TPLO but because if one is weak it's very likely the other is too. If you don't treat the bad knee chances are the good one will get stressed more.

Expensive: yes. Surgery ran 4200 ish per knee (no insurance).
Results - very very good
Recovery - is tough. You will need to be seperated from Blossom, I was not crated but was kept in a room (did some destruction) but with patience it is worth it.

TPLO post op care link from my vet.

I have mild seperation anxiety. Luckily the neighbours dropped by during the day. At the end of the confinement I refused to be locked up.

It's hard, not cheap and requires a lot of patience. But the results are work it, I have had success and do I recommend it.

hugRiohug

Another dog Chase is about to or just had TPLO and has sep.anx.
Koko Puresalani (sp?) also had TPLO.

Feel free to ask lots and lots of questions, I will try and answer them.
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Troop

Happy Dogs come- from CA
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 25, '07 10:23pm PST 
PS Rio my mama also took days off and stayed home and worked sitting next to me. That helped during the first week when I had staples and was healing. Then her and dad worked opposite hours for a while to minimize my alone time.

Stairs: you have a sling to help keep balance

Wk 6: I walked 5 houses down the street and back and was fine on the way out but limped on the way home.
Before surgery I could go one block but limped alot and was on Rimadyl for arthritis.
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Troop

Happy Dogs come- from CA
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 25, '07 10:30pm PST 
PS Rio my mama also took days off and stayed home and worked sitting next to me. That helped during the first week when I had staples and was healing. Then her and dad worked opposite hours for a while to minimize my alone time.

Stairs: you have a sling to help keep balance

Wk 6: I walked 5 houses down the street and back and was fine on the way out but limped on the way home.
Before surgery I could go one block but limped alot and was on Rimadyl for arthritis.
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Troop

Happy Dogs come- from CA
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 25, '07 11:24pm PST 
darn too late to eat the double post.

Chase

our pal Clover also had TPLO

but these are all TPLO dogs, I don't know pups that chose other options.
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rio catalina

where is- everyone?
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 25, '07 11:38pm PST 
my mom lives alone with just us. she is a nurse and works 12 hour night shifts. she pays the kids next door to come check on us in the evening and let us out, but can't expect a 12 year old to be able to help me. our home is small. mom just needs to weigh benefits vs costs. what if's...what if i go through this surgery and then my other knee gives out. paying for one knee is one thing...two? what if after surgery i'm more painful when right now i'm merely uncomfortable. i get a bit sore after a mile walk, but overall, i get around pretty good. the last thing mom wants to do is make life more difficult or more painful for me. what do people do who can't afford this surgery? what is best for me? will my life improve after surgery or be made worse by surgery? there is just alot for mom to contemplate right now. if i do have surgery...i've no doubt mom will be coming here for loads of advice. thanks to all who have responded. mom still needs to make an appointment with the surgeon. paws....rio
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Sheba

Gone Goatin'!
 
 
Barked: Mon Jun 25, '07 11:49pm PST 
I have never been in this situation with one of my dogs thank goodness but, basically, I need the same kind of surgery but can't afford it so I am just careful how I trod...I wish our dogs could take the same care...Anyway, here are some of links I found that I hope are helpful in making your decision:
http://home.earthlink.net/~tiggerpoz/id4.html
http://www .vetspecialistofnm.com/health.shtml
http://www.dfwvetsurgeons.com/d ownloads/cuttingedge2005.3.pdf
Our thoughts are with you as I absolutely understand your predicament. confused

Edited by author Mon Jun 25, '07 11:53pm PST

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Kaya

All you need is- love :)
 
 
Barked: Tue Jun 26, '07 12:34am PST 
It is the best decidion my mom made. I am doing wonderfully now (surgery 4 months ago) When you think of all that comes with it the surgery price is not that bad. (We paid $1600 which included 4 ? check up appointments as well....) And trustme, that is n ot easy for a single teacher to comeup with, but it was totally worth it.... Kaya had the same thing... total tear and much arthritis... she is only 4. She has the ever so slight limp a the walk, but she is getting stronger and stronger on it... at a run, you could never tell she had a problem. The after care is a bit tedious, but I couldn'tlet the poor girl be threel legged lame for ever... (She was bad... the fourth leg just hung there and it wasn't goingto get better... soundslikeyou may notbe thisbad... but still consider the option...)

As for the busting the other knee... that can happen just as easily NOT doing the surgery... it's a crap shoot... 50/50 but they areputting too much stress on the other knee without the surgery as well..

as for the three steps to the yard... that is no big deal. You can create a little harness with to help support (not so muchlift) the back end going down. YOu can't get outof my housewithout steps either. I am not as heavy, but it would still be the same concept. Kaya freaked me out a few times in after care as she jumped the baby gate on one back leg a few occasions... but you just do your best to keep them calm... you should be doingt hat anyway... recovery will not be as good without the surgery and you can end up with more expensive problemsin the future. I understand the difficulty of your decisions, thoug... I went through it too, but realized I raelly had no option. I had to do what was right by the pup.

Good luck in your decision smile

Edited by author Tue Jun 26, '07 12:47am PST

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